The Racketty-Packetty House
Week of June 16, 2008

Block 4:

Meg and Peg and Kilmanskeg received many proposals of marriage from a gentleman mouse and two cock sparrows. They did not want fashionable wives but wives with cheerful dispositions and a happy home. But Meg and Peg and Kilmanskeg, like Ridiklis, could not bear to leave their family – besides not wanting to live in nests and hatch eggs. So the news was broken to the gentleman mouse and the sparrows so sweetly that they were not offended and they kept on visiting just as before.

While the family was dancing in celebration of their new names and the new name of their house, Racketty-Packetty, Ridiklis returned from a shopping trip. She informed the little group that she has heard the most awful thing. Cynthia will put the old Racketty-Packetty House behind the nursery door for the present and then it shall be carried downstairs and burned. “It’s too disgraceful to be kept in any decent nursery.”

The little family can’t believe their ears. Meg, Peg and Kilmanskeg question if they will really burn the house down. Peter Piper declares he doesn’t care how shabby it is, “It’s a jolly nice old place and it’s the only house we’ve ever had.” Gustibus said, “I wouldn’t move if I was made King of England. Buckingham Palace wouldn’t be half as nice.”

All of a sudden, there was a rumbling. It was the nurse pushing the arm chair in front of Racketty-Packetty House to hide it so it wouldn’t disgrace the castle. Peter tells the little family that, “If they don’t see us they will forget all about us and we shall not be burned up at all.” The little family can enjoy themselves more than ever because they won’t be bothered with Cynthia. “Let’s all join hands and have a dance.” So they did and were so relieved they laughed and laughed and tumbled in a heap. They felt safe hidden behind the chair. Cynthia was so taken with Tidy Castle that she played with nothing else for days and days. Instead of being jealous of Tidy Castle, the family began to have fun watching the Castle and its inhabitants from their broken down windows. It was all very exciting!


In this chapter we find that two sparrows and a mouse wish to marry Meg, Peg and Kilmanskeg. But they wish to remain in their home. The animals remain friends with the doll family

Poor Bird. Sad he will not get an acceptance to his proposal, but they are all such happy characters in the book that one does not feel bad about it. They all get along and enjoy each others company even though they are not "married."
I think it says a lot about the dolls that their animal friends remain friends even after the proposal is refused.

They all look for the good and happiness in everything. Just look at the way the family took the news about their house being burned. Shock at first, but then they quickly rallied once the nurse hid the house with the big chair. Peter Piper has an “out of sight, out of mind” thought and believes they will be left alone and they can enjoy themselves more than ever.

Yikes, I wonder if Cynthia intends to burn the dolls too. Why would she keep them? She obviously doesn’t like them. In her mind, they are funny looking and out of fashion Dutch dolls. I wish I could rescue them all and their little house.

I like how 'jolly' they always are, and how they take adversity with a smile. I wouldn't put it past Cynthia to care very little what happens to the Racketty Packetty dolls. Perhaps she wouldn't have said 'burn the dolls too', but she wouldn't have cared if they had been in the house when it was disposed of!

I like the way this block ended with the Racketty-Packetty family finding all kinds of enjoyment watching the inhabitants of Tidy Castle go about their business. There was no jealousy of the Tidy Castle inhabitants, just an intense interest in what they were doing.

I think that the vivid interest the Racketty-Packetty people take in everything about them is what makes them so joyous.